Efforts to protect born, unborn babies fail in Senate

WASHINGTON (BP) — The U.S. Senate failed again Tuesday to approve protections for unborn babies late in their mothers’ pregnancies and newborns who survive abortions.

Supporters of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act fell short in afternoon attempts to bring the proposals to the Senate floor. They needed 60 votes to invoke cloture, as the procedural move is known, and proceed to a roll call on passage of the bills.

Senators voted 53-44 for cloture on the pain-capable legislation and 56–41 for cloture on the born-alive bill. Two Democrats voted in favor of cloture on the pain-capable measure and three in favor on the born-alive proposal. Two Republicans voted against cloture on the pain-capable bill.

The Senate also failed to invoke cloture on the pain-capable proposal in 2018 and the born-alive measure in 2019.

The pain-capable bill would have banned abortions on babies 20 weeks or more after fertilization based on scientific evidence that a child in the womb can experience pain by that point in gestation. The other proposal would have required health care for a baby born alive during an abortion.

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